Distance Learning (DL) Sanctuary Awards

What are the DL Sanctuary Awards?

We recognise that forced displacement creates significant barriers to accessing higher education. These DL Sanctuary Awards therefore offer opportunities for those who have been forcibly displaced from their homes and/or who are at risk of political persecution, violence or conflict anywhere in the world to study with the University of Leicester part-time via distance learning.

Applicants can be based anywhere in the world as long as there is regular access to the internet. We welcome applications from those living outside the UK and will determine eligibility on a case by case basis.

The Award provides a full fee waiver only (it cannot cover the cost of optional campus-based activities).

What can I study?

You can choose the part-time version of any of the following distance learning Master’s programmes:


You can apply for a DL Sanctuary Award if you hold an academic offer to study (or are waiting for a decision) and have at any time been forcibly displaced from your home and forced to seek sanctuary elsewhere. Eligible applicants may be based anywhere in the world and be refugees, people seeking asylum and people who have been internally displaced and/or who are at risk of political persecution, violence or conflict. If you have a background of forced displacement and believe you are eligible, please apply, and we will consider your application on a case-by-case basis.

You may have always aspired to study at university but faced obstacles in achieving your goal. We understand that your studies may have been interrupted, that you might not have evidence of your previous qualifications or that your qualifications aren't transferable. You also may not have evidence of your English language abilities and may need support obtaining this. The DL Sanctuary Award is designed to accommodate these factors, so don’t let these stop you from applying.

How do I apply?

  1. Apply for a place on your chosen course from those listed above (part-time study only). The application form is available via the relevant Master’s programme link above. Please note that start dates may not be the same for each course.
  2. Once you have an academic offer (conditional or unconditional) please apply for the Distance Learning Sanctuary Award. Please note that you need to first have an academic offer before you submit a scholarship application. For the ‘What is your likely source of fundng?’ question, please select ‘DL Sanctuary Award’.
  3. It is essential that both forms are submitted before you will be considered for a DL Sanctuary Award.   

Supporting statement

In your supporting statement please include your response to the following prompts:

  • Please tell us about your educational journey and outline what barriers to education you have encountered, particularly as a result of displacement and/or risk of persecution, violence or conflict (250-300 words)
  • What are your ambitions for the future and how would the Sanctuary Scholarship help you achieve these ambitions? (250-300 words)

Evidence of qualifications

When you apply for your degree course, if you are unable to provide evidence of your previous education or professional experience please use your personal statement to tell us as much about your previous education or work experience as you can.

Other useful information


Scholarship applications will be reviewed about 4 weeks before the start date of the course that you are applying for. Make sure you apply for the course early and then apply for the scholarship at least 4 weeks before that start date to have the best chance of being considered for a scholarship. In some cases, we may need to defer your place to later in the year. However, places are limited and there is no guarantee we will be able to offer you a scholarship.

Please contact if you have any questions about this Award.

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